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Life after retirement just got a little bit sweeter for Kobe Bryant.

Bryant’s short animated film Dear Basketball will be competing against Garden Party (by Victor Caire and Gabriel Grapperon), Lou (by Dave Mullins and Dana Murray), Negative Space (by Max Porter and Ru Kuwahata) and Revolting Rhymes (by Jakob Schuh and Jan Lachauer) for the “2018 Best Animated Short Award” at the Oscars.

Kobe took to Twitter to express his thanks to the Academy and those who helped him on the project.


The film, which was directed by Disney animator and scored by John Williams, is an animated version of the “Dear Basketball” poem that Kobe wrote for the Players Tribune in 2015 as he wrapped up his illustrious NBA career. Bryant voices his poem in the short film as animation portrays Kobe’s love of the game.

Bryant wrote the poem in 2015 when he announced his retirement from basketball. He spent all 20 years of his career with the Lakers and was an 18-time All-Star.

Not many find a second act to thrive in. Kobe is hoping an Oscar victory will lead many more championship victories, away from the basketball courts.